The IRC Insight on 'Caring for Children Affected by HIV and AIDS' highlights the urgent need to support families and communities to care for children orphaned by HIV/AIDS. The report looks at how the epidemic undermines children's health and schooling, and reinforces marginalization and deprivation. It explores the options for the care of children in communities affected by the AIDS epidemic. Beginning with the premise that the parent-child bond is the basic building block of child development and the family the basic unit of society, the report looks at ways to keep parents alive and the family together for as long as possible. It then goes on to explore alternative care arrangements beyond the immediate family. Settings range from care by the extended family, to different forms of fostering in the community, through adoption and placement in residential institutions, which should be used as a last resort. The report highlights the many ways in which actors from outside the immediate community can help sustain and improve the capacity of households and communities to care for the children that are left behind and remain increasingly vulnerable.
aids; child care; child headed families; child protection; hiv; right to appropriate standards of care; right to care and protection; right to parental care;
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